2003 Seattle Annual Meeting (November 2–5, 2003)
Paper No. 178-5
Presentation Time: 2:30 PM-2:45 PM

"NOAH'S FLOOD" AND THE LATE QUATERNARY HISTORY OF THE BLACK SEA AND ITS ADJACENT BASINS: A CRITICAL OVERVIEW OF THE FLOOD HYPOTHESES

YANKO-HOMBACH, Valentina, Avalon Institute of Applied Science, Charleswood Technology Center, 3227 Roblin Blvd, Winnipeg, MB R3R0C2 Canada, valyan@avalon-institute.org.

The legend of Noah's Flood / the Great Flood is found in several of the world religions. W. Ryan recently attributed the story to the Black Sea, countering common understanding that it originated in Mesopotamia by proposing that a catastrophic rising of the Black Sea level in early Holocene (7.2 ka BP or 8.2 ka BP) accelerated the dispersion of early Neolithic people into the interior of Europe. and formed the basis of the legend. A. Tchepalyga proposed that the late Pleistocene (16-12 ka BP) flood in the Black Sea reduced the life space and food resources of late Palaeolithic people, causing their inland migration, increasing population density and starting the transition from a hunting and gathering culture to a sedentary farming and cattle-breeding culture, thus creating a basis for the Great Flood legend. This presentation provides an overview of the original author’s data as well as other geological records obtained largely by Ex-USSR and Former Eastern Block scientists during a large-scale marine geological survey of the Black Sea shelf, supplemented by field observations and archaeological findings collected since 1970. Thousands of kilometres of high-resolution seismic profiles along with thousands of short (~4 m) and long (~30 m) cores obtained in shallow areas were analysed micropalaeontologically, sedimentologically, geochemically and correlated with hundreds of 14C, O and C isotope data points. New materials on the Sea of Marmara and the Bosporus are also considered. In the context of the flood hypotheses three scenarios of Black Sea development (progressive, catastrophic and oscillatory), the re-colonisation of the Black Sea by Mediterranean immigrants in Holocene, the possible influence of the Black Sea outflow on the formation of S1 sapropels in the Eastern Mediterranean, and the influence of oscillatory sea levels on human development are discussed. It is shown that "Tschepalyga’s flood" was probably more dramatic than Ryan’s flood, as the level of the Neweuxinian Lake increased rather rapidly from ca -140 m to -50 m during 3 ka (16-13 ka BP), reached -20 m at the end of the Pleistocene, and than dropped to -35 m during Younger Dryas. The Holocene transgression and "Ryan's flood" began from -35 m at ~8.6 ka BP but not -140 m as was proposed.

2003 Seattle Annual Meeting (November 2–5, 2003)
Session No. 178
“Noah's Flood” and the Late Quaternary Geological and Archaeological History of the Black Sea and Adjacent Basins
Washington State Convention and Trade Center: 606
1:30 PM-5:30 PM, Tuesday, November 4, 2003

Geological Society of America Abstracts with Programs, Vol. 35, No. 6, September 2003, p. 460

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